Monday, July 10, 2006

Using bloggers

Hi everybody, that’s my first post in the school, but I always watched you from the back lines (not doing any noise at all, though: I’m a good student!).

Yesterday I received an e-mail from a young author asking me to promote his book on my blog. As he sent me an abstract and a picture of the cover I asked him if he could send me the book, so I could read it and review it with much pleasure, as it is about food.
He told me he could not send me a free copy and if I wanted to review it I would have to buy it.

As I am not making any money from my blog, and as I will review the book for free, do you think I should buy the book or just tell him that if he likes a free review (meeting the specific dead line of july the 20th) he will have to wait until I’m willing to buy the book on my own decision, and not by his kind request?


This Post was written by Piperita from The Kitchen Pantry

10 comments:

Bonnie said...

I think that's absolutely fair enough. How can you review a book fairly if you haven't read it? I really don't think that magazines and newspapers that write reviews go out and buy the books, they are sent to them for free by the publishers! I'm sure if he really wants you to review the book properly, he would be more than willing to send you a copy - even if it is just to borrow.

ilva said...

Pip-I wouldn't even consider making the review if I was asked to do it and the I had to pay for it ! I have done many reviews (asked for ones that is) and I never paid for the books, it's not more than fair to at least get the book for free after the effort put into the reading, pondering and writing. When I have made spontaneous reviews because I have found a really good book, I obviously think differently. (Dai non essere così buona, non eri te che volevi smettere con il buonismo???)

nika said...

Totally agree. I do feel for him tho if he is what he seems, a struggling author trying to do some guerrila marketing but he has to factor into the equation that he cannot market the book off the money of others. Period. Its just not a tenable marketing model. Doesnt create good will and is thus risky.

He may not be what he seems and just an enterprising type who is trying to get sales any way he can.

I am not telling you what to do. If it were me, I would be firm and offer to review a complementary copy. That in itself is already plenty generous.

Kevin said...

I won't even promise to publish a review. Send me the book, I'll read it, and if I think it's worthy of a review I'll do so -- ON MY SCHEDULE, not the author's or publisher's.

I will make an exception if a friend asks for the review, and I'll disclose the relationship.

Piperita said...

Thanks everybody, you are perfectly right but I wanted to be sure!

I already ask for a copy but he told me he can't send me a free one... AKA I can't review the book...

Many thanks!!!

mrs d said...

Odd. If the author can't afford to send copies and his publisher is too stingy to provide free ones, I wonder why he can't just offer to send a PDF of the page proofs for review instead. I know many authors who end up doing that when sending the actual book isn't an option.

William I. Lengeman III said...

I've done a fair amount of reviewing and I've gotten many direct requests from people wanting me to review their book. No one has ever asked me to buy a copy. The knucklehead in question needs to educate himself.

Amy Sherman said...

Nope, nope, nope. Unless the book sounds fascinating to you and you happen to want to purchase it anyway. I do buy books, but I also get "review copies" then after I read the books I decide if I want to review them. Certainly don't review the book if you haven't read it!

kitchenmage said...

I'm with Ms D in finding it odd. My publishers have always been happy to spam the world with free copies of books. Begged me for names, in fact. If this guy can't/won't send you a copy to review, then it's ridiculous to expect you to buy one as a favor to him.

Cybele said...

Why is that not considered spam of some sort?

"Please buy my product ... and then advertise it for me!"

I just participated in a "Virtual Book Tour" for Ayun Halliday. She sent me the book well ahead of time ... no charge.

I think the PDF offer is a good one though ... or at least request some excerpts to see if it's something within the realm of what you'd normally read.